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October 15 2019

mr-absentia

The Spoils of Economic War: How the US, Saudis Profit From Sanctions on Venezuela and Iran

«The "almighty" dollar would fall from grace with back up from oil

Trump opens war fronts everywhere, which wouldn't seem to make sense unless they were a distraction. But they're not.

The rise of China as a global power has been silently transforming the international monetary system, another element triggering the U.S. into endless economic bullying.

Since the abandonment of the gold standard in 1971, the U.S. dollar is not linked to any assets, becoming a fiat currency. In these kinds of cases, only a country's output could back the currency in the long term. But what happens when monetary expansion occurs faster than increases in productivity?

Bringing new meaning to the "In God We Trust" motto coined so long ago, the dollar’s value depends on its capacity to remain an international reserve currency; that is, a currency other countries hold as part of their foreign exchange reserves and use in their international transactions.

In a world where economic agents don't ask the Federal Reserve to convert their notes into gold or any other physical asset, trust is the only thing keeping the U.S. upright. As a result, the dollar has remained a mighty currency because most international transactions are traded in U.S. dollars.

On Jan. 30, U.S. National Security Advisor John Bolton, in fact, revealed very little when he blatantly admitted that the coup attempt in Venezuela was really about grasping for oil resources. In reality, aggression by the U.S. hides something much more than that.

If the dollar stops being the world's most traded currency, the U.S. will not be able to issue the notes it needs to finance an almost 50-year-old federal deficit which rose from US$666 billion in 2017 to US$779 billion in 2018.

"The U.S. budget deficit by year is how much more the federal government spends than it receives in revenue annually. The Fiscal Year 2020 U.S. budget deficit is expected to be US$1.1 trillion.

"That's the biggest deficit since 2012," wrote Kimberly Amadeo in The Balance, noting how President Trump has ramped up the U.S. deficit to pay for record-high levels of military spending.

The dollar losing status as the world's preferred currency would give the U.S. problems paying for imports in an economy where its lack of international competitiveness has given it a trade deficit since 1976, which widened to US$50 billion in March.

Last but not least, if the dollar stops being almighty, the U.S. will have a very difficult time maintaining itself as a first-world-class economy, since it's federal debt exceeded US$22 trillion in February. This amount represents over 76 percent of what the U.S. is able to produce in one year. Nevertheless, this is most likely to get worse: the debt-to-GDP ratio in the United States will rise to 150 percent by 2049, according to the Congressional Budget Office.

Besides preventing Venezuela and Iran from exporting their natural resources, the U.S. is actively seeking to avoid the dollar's collapse, an inevitability in the next few years, as the history of previous empires has already shown.

This is why the Trump administration is prone to fighting the use of barter, virtual currencies or other alternative international payment methods.

U.S. sanctions are not whimsical expressions of this president. They are tools used to retain hegemonic power in a multipolar world no longer willing to tolerate such an aspiration. At the core of U.S. bullying is not ideological disagreement but economic decline.»

October 08 2019

mr-absentia

September 24 2019

mr-absentia

European Parliament strongly condemns repression of women in Iran

«In her remarks to the session, MEP Anna Fotyga from Poland said she commended the women of Iran for their bravery, determination and will not only for their struggle for women’s rights, but for their protests against the regime.» … I feel this remark is about (illegal) regime change, rather than human rights.

Wikipedia: National Council of Resistance of Iran (redirect from NCRI women's committee)

mr-absentia

The attacks on Saudi Arabia merit a firm response - Abqaiq the powder keg

«Consider the cost of recent Western restraint. In May Iran hit four tankers in the United Arab Emirates; in June it struck two more tankers in the Strait of Hormuz; later it took down an American drone. Mr Trump was prepared to retaliate only after that last aggression—and even then he pulled back at the last minute. The attack on September 14th was vastly more consequential. The president has said that America is “locked and loaded”. In Tehran they are watching to see whether he is all talk, as they are in Beijing, Moscow, Pyongyang, and in countries whose security depends on the idea that America will turn up.

If any nuclear negotiations are to succeed, Iran must pay a price for Abqaiq. America wants a more sweeping agreement than the original one, but only the pragmatic faction in Tehran, weakened by America’s approach, will make such a deal. While Iran can hit out again, the hardliners will have a veto over any talks. If America is seen as a paper tiger, they will be able to argue that Iran need not give much ground. On the contrary, they will say that their country should pile pressure on America by accelerating its nuclear programme. America and its allies therefore need to convince Iran that it cannot use violence to get its way.

The first stage of a response is to establish precisely where Saturday’s attack originated and who planned it. America must share this publicly, partly because Mr Trump’s word alone does not carry weight, but also to build a coalition and help stifle the objections of Iran’s apologists. Evidence against Iran could pave the way for new sanctions. Mr Trump has promised more—though America is already doing pretty much all it can. He should be backed by the Europeans, who need to understand that peace depends on deterring Iran, and China, which imports over 9m b/d of oil, much of it from the Middle East.

That is not all. If the Abqaiq attack is the work of Iran’s revolutionary guards, they should face direct consequences. That involves covert operations, by cyber-units that can disrupt their communications and finances; and air strikes on guard units outside Iran in Syria. Ideally, these would be carried out by a coalition, but if need be, America and Saudi Arabia should act alone. The risk of escalation should not be ignored, but Iran does not want all-out war any more than Saudi Arabia and America do. Israel frequently launches air strikes against Iranian targets in Syria and Iraq without provoking an Iranian escalation.»

mr-absentia

Abandon illusion that Iran can be defeated by pressure: Zarif to US

«Trump’s goal has been to get another deal as he has already described the JCPOA as "the worst deal ever negotiated.” The White House position has been that maximum pressure will continue until Iranian officials accept to sit at the negotiating table.

Iranian officials, however, say it was Washington that left the JCPOA last year although the international and multilateral deal was endorsed by the UN Security Council in the form of a resolution. Tehran says talks with Washington are impossible as the latter is pressing ahead with its hostile policy and refuses to lift sanctions against the Islamic Republic.

In an interview with Malaysia's official news agency Bernama in August, the Iranian foreign minister said the country will not renegotiate its 2015 nuclear deal with world powers, but is open to talks on finding ways to implement the existing accord.

"We are ready to talk and consult with others on how to best implement this deal. We are talking about Europe coming to comply with its own obligations under the deal," Zarif said.

Elsewhere in his interview with the NPR, Iran's foreign minister said, “The United States can have a much better deal with Iran if they started talking to us based on respect, based on mutual respect and based on moving forward.”

Referring to a forthcoming meeting between Iran and the four remaining members of the P5+1 group – the UK, France, Russia, and China plus Germany – next Wednesday, Zarif said, “Four of the five permanent members [of the UN Security Council] plus Germany will be seated around the table along with me and the High Representative of the European Union.”

He added, “There is an empty chair there for the United States, but there is a ticket for that chair and that is to be law abiding.”»

September 17 2019

mr-absentia

October 25 2018

mr-absentia

US May Impose Sanctions on Firms Working on Syria Reconstruction - Reports - Sputnik International

another proof that the sanctions-addicted US gov’t is the enemy of peace in Syria.

“…the strategy reportedly focuses on political and diplomatic efforts toward forcing Iranian armed forces out of Syria, namely, via putting financial pressure on them.

Three people with knowledge of the plan told NBC News that the United States was set to hinder Syria's reconstruction by withdrawing its aid from the areas where the Russian and the Iranian forces are present, and also introducing sanctions against the Russian and the Iranian companies engaged in the reconstruction.

The United States is seeking Iranian forces withdrawal from Syria, insisting that their presence in the country reduces the possibility of achieving a political settlement to the crisis and hinders the struggle against the Daesh* terror group. In late September, James Jeffrey, the US State Department's special representative for Syria engagement, pledged that the United States would maintain its presence in the country to defeat Daesh, expelling the Iranian forces and achieving a peaceful settlement.

While Russia and Iran, along with Turkey, are the guarantors of the ceasefire in Syria, they are also assisting in the reconstruction of the country's cities and infrastructure, largely destroyed in over seven years of clashes between the Syrian government, opposition and militant groups.”

mr-absentia

October 22 2018

mr-absentia

parstoday.com: イメージが語るイラン 収穫の秋の様子

Photos: autumn harvesting in Iran. Why does the US want to destroy this beautiful country?

Reposted byjutyndaJessSilente

October 07 2018

mr-absentia

October 06 2018

mr-absentia

@assadajd: Dinner time with the loving Iranian couple who bumped into us at lunch and we are now sharing our next meal again with a few Persian classics like Tahdig, Kashke Bademjoun, Ash, Khoresh Bamein and of course Gormeh Sabzi!

mr-absentia

@assadajd: Iranian Pizza or categorically labelled as ‘Fast Food’ across the country along with Burgers, Sandwiches and other western food items of quick consumption is unique with a tomato-less base, a delicate crust and locally available cheese.

Reposted bypressanybetoninspiracyjna
mr-absentia

ghasedakk: Imam Mosque, Naghsh-e Jahan Square, Isfahan

mr-absentia

Isfahan, Iran.

Tags: Iran
mr-absentia
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Grapes, Sun & Raisin! Malāyer, Iran. (via The Daily Persian)

mr-absentia

biladal-sham: Iran. Tehran. Women in colorful chadors celebrate the end of the fasting month or Ramadan with the Fitr prayers. They read from the Qur’an. November 2006.

mr-absentia
Iran was indeed Islamized, but it was not Arabized. Persians remained Persians. And after an interval of silence, Iran reemerged as a separate, different and distinctive element within Islam, eventually adding a new element even to Islam itself. Culturally, politically, and most remarkable of all even religiously, the Iranian contribution to this new Islamic civilization is of immense importance. The work of Iranians can be seen in every field of cultural endeavor, including Arabic poetry, to which poets of Iranian origin composing their poems in Arabic made a very significant contribution. In a sense, Iranian Islam is a second advent of Islam itself, a new Islam sometimes referred to as Islam-i Ajam. It was this Persian Islam, rather than the original Arab Islam, that was brought to new areas and new peoples: to the Turks, first in Central Asia and then in the Middle East in the country which came to be called Turkey, and of course to India. The Ottoman Turks brought a form of Iranian civilization to the walls of Vienna.
— Bernard Lewis (via The Daily Persian)

September 12 2018

mr-absentia

US Says Assad Has Approved Gas Attack In Idlib, Setting Stage For Major Military Conflict

“The Wall Street Journal has just published a bombshell on Sunday evening as Russian and Syrian warplanes continue bombing raids over al-Qaeda held Idlib, citing unnamed US officials who claim “President Bashar al-Assad of Syria has approved the use of chlorine gas in an offensive against the country’s last major rebel stronghold.”

And perhaps more alarming is that the report details that Trump is undecided over whether new retaliatory strikes could entail expanding the attack to hit Assad allies Russia and Iran this time around.”

mr-absentia

Ron Paul: 'Why Are We Siding With al-Qaeda in Syria?'

“Last week, I urged the Secretary of State and National Security Advisor to stop protecting al-Qaeda in Syria by demanding that the Syrian government leave Idlib under al-Qaeda control. While it may seem hard to believe that the US government is helping al-Qaeda in Syria, it’s not as strange as it may seem: our interventionist foreign policy increasingly requires Washington to partner up with ‘bad guys’ in pursuit of its dangerous and aggressive foreign policy goals.

Does the Trump Administration actually support al-Qaeda and ISIS? Of course not. But the ‘experts’ who run Trump’s foreign policy have determined that a de facto alliance with these two extremist groups is for the time being necessary to facilitate the more long-term goals in the Middle East. And what are those goals? Regime change for Iran.”

August 21 2018

mr-absentia

@IranTodayPTV on Twitter - another victim of social media’s war on “fake news” source.

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